Paternity Testing: Which is the Right Option for You?

Generally, there are three types of tests commonly used to produce paternity results: legal testing, DNA kits, and prenatal testing. The procedures involved in completed each test are somewhat different, as well as the reasons they’re taken. Knowing a little about each form testing beforehand can help you decided whether legal, non-legal, or prenatal testing is most beneficial to you. Companies that assist individuals with completing DNA testing can aid you with scheduling legal and prenatal tests. Additionally, many supply sample collection kits, which you can mail to one of the labs they’re partnered with.

Court Admissible Results
Legal DNA paternity testing is chosen most frequently, and provides results that are admissible in court cases and treated as evidence. For instance, individuals who are involved in child custody and support issues typically opt for legal testing to prove or disprove paternity before moving forward with their cases. To take a legal DNA test, court orders aren’t needed. However, if you don’t have a court order, a doctor’s prescription that includes the names of each party being tested will suffice. At a testing center, buccal swabs are used to collect DNA orally, which is then sent to a lab for testing.

Testing While Pregnant
In contrast to other forms of testing, prenatal paternity testing is completed before a child is born. DNA samples are collected both from the mother and alleged father and analyzed for matches. Because the mother’s blood contains fetal genetic material, it’s possible to compare DNA with the potential father to determine paternity. Prenatal testing is done at a testing center and the results are evaluated by professionals, making it easier for couples to legally list biological fathers.

Home Testing
Unlike legal testing, the results of a non-legal test cannot be used as evidence in a legal discrepancy. For this reason, DNA home kits are usually purchased when the reasoning behind obtaining paternity results is personal. The kits are easy to use and include instructions on how to collect DNA samples, which usually involves the use of buccal swabs. A reliable company will provide you with the kit, instructions, and postage envelope, which you’ll use to mail the samples to a certified lab.

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